AWS Bridge Guarantees (AWS Überbrückungsgarantien) are issued by the state-owned
Austria Wirtschaftsservice Gesellschaft mbH (AWS) in order to support companies and
businesses facing liquidity shortages due to COVID-19.
AWS Bridge Guarantees can be issued as collateral for credit facilities that finance the running costs ( e.g., personnel costs, material costs) or for the deferral of existing
AWS Bridge Guarantees can cover up to 80% of the credit facility
commitment up to a maximum amount of €2.5m. Current practice
of AWS is to apply this limit per enterprise so that more than one affiliated company may
apply for AWS Bridge Guarantees.
No collateral is required and AWS Bridge Guarantees can also be used as collateral for
the deferral of existing credit lines.
Applications for an AWS Bridge Guarantee are open to Austrian commercial and industrial
small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) (i.e., companies with fewer than 250 employees, a
turnover of up to €50m or a balance sheet total of up to €43m) and businesses or natural
persons active in a liberal profession (Freiberufler) provided that they are not
overindebted (überschuldet) and/or illiquid (zahlungsunfähig) or are in
need of a re-organization under the Austrian Company Reorganization Act (URG,
Unternehmensreorganisationsgesetz) according to the financial statements of the
previous financial year.
Companies active in the tourism or export sector are supported by the Hotel and Tourism
Bank (ÖHT) and the Oesterreichische Kontrollbank (OeKB) and do not benefit from the AWS
Furthermore, credit and financial institutions and insurance companies are excluded from
the AWS Guarantee regime.
AWS, together with the Austrian Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs.
Applications for AWS Bridge Guarantees can be submitted to AWS by the financing
banks of the applicants.
Applications can only be submitted online on the homepage of AWS and must include
- a bank offer of cover (Bankpromesse) on the underlying credit facility or on
the deferral of an existing credit line;
- a rating of the bank on the one-year probability of default; and
- a confirmation issued by the bank that the applicant is not in need of a
re-organization under the URG.
From 12 March 2020.